Welcome back to what has become a yearly tradition: predicting the least crowded Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party. We have done the same for each of the past two years, and we’ve been pretty successful if we do say so ourselves. We’ll look back at last year’s recommendations in a bit and give you the full 2015 list, but first make sure you check out our dedicated page for a complete list of dates as well as a thorough description of what the Halloween party is.
In short, if you’re looking for the best 2015 Halloween Party to attend, we recommend Tuesday, September 15, 2015. Each of the past two years we recommended the equivalent party, Tuesday, September 17, 2013 and Tuesday, September 16, 2014. In 2013 it turned out to be the party with the lowest wait times by our calculation, while last year’s came in fourth. The reason we still recommend that date despite it’s lack of a top finish last year is simple: 4 of the top 5 from 2014 were all parties earlier in September…parties which are not offered this year.
In 2014, the first Halloween party was on Labor Day, which was September 1. Previously, Disney had scheduled the first party for the Tuesday following Labor Day, and they’ve reverted to that schedule for this year. The reason the first Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party is not until September 15 is because Labor Day is not until September 7th. To make up for only two weeks of September parties, Disney has decided to load October up, with 18 parties in 31 days.
If you’re not going to be around for the first party of the year, Tuesday, September 15, go as early as you can. Over the past few years we’ve noticed an increasing trend where the parties get busier the closer the calender ticks towards Halloween. That sounds logical, but it hasn’t always been the case. A trend that has remained in tact is the difference in day of the week, with Tuesday evening parties being the least busy. So go early in September and/or go on a Tuesday.
Before we get to the 2015 party rankings, let’s revisit our predictions from last year to see how accurate we were. Here were our top 5 recommended party days and how they turned out:
|2014 Party Date||Projected Wait Time Rank||Actual Measured Wait Time Rank|
|Tuesday, September 16, 2014||Lowest Wait Times||4|
|Tuesday, September 9, 2014||2||3|
|Friday, September 12, 2014||3||5|
|Sunday, September 28, 2014||4||9|
|Monday, September 1, 2014||5||1|
As you can see, we didn’t do too shabby. On average, we were off by 3 places, which is a little worse than we were hoping for, but if you had chosen a party based on our recommendations it would have been quite close to what we thought it would. The only real misstep in our 2014 top 5 was September 28, which was still in the top 10.
Most of our miscalculations came with the parties that broke our “closer to Halloween are busier” and “Tuesdays are best” rules outlines above. The Halloween parties on Friday, September 26 and Sunday, October 4 we had ranked 6 and 7 respectively, but the measured wait time rank was actually 17 and 20. On the opposite side of the spectrum, Sunday, September 14, Friday, September 19, and Tuesday, September 23 were all ranked too low.
Now let’s get on to this year’s rankings. Here are our predicted rankings of attraction wait times at each of the 2015 Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Parties.
[Please note that prices have not yet been released for the 2015 Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party dates. This page will be updated once they are out.]
|Party Date||Attraction Wait Times Rank||Advance Purchase Price for an Adult Ticket||Notes|
|Tuesday, September 15, 2015||Lowest Wait Times||$68|
|Tuesday, September 22, 2015||2||$68|
|Sunday, September 27, 2015||3||$68|
|Tuesday, October 6, 2015||4 (Estimated)||$74||“Estimated” because there is no equivalent 2014 date|
|Friday, September 18, 2015||5||$68|
|Thursday, October 1, 2015||6||$68|
|Sunday, September 20, 2015||7||$68|
|Friday, October 2, 2015||8||$74|
|Tuesday, October 13, 2015||9 (Estimated)||$74||“Estimated” because there is no equivalent 2014 date|
|Tuesday, October 27, 2015||10||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013 and 7 days in advance in 2014.|
|Thursday, October 29, 2015||11||$74||Sold out 28 days in advance in 2014.|
|Tuesday, October 20, 2015||12||$74|
|Monday, October 12, 2015||13||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013 and 2014.|
|Thursday, October 22, 2015||14||$74|
|Friday, September 25, 2015||15||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
|Sunday, October 4, 2015||16||$74|
|Thursday, October 8, 2015||17||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013.|
|Sunday, October 25, 2015||18||$74|
|Saturday, October 31, 2015||19||$87||Sold out 27 days in advance in 2013 and 71 (August 21!) days in advance in 2014. Crowds will be heavy for character meets and parades.|
|Thursday, October 15, 2015||20||$74||Sold out 2 days in advance in 2013 and 1 day in advance in 2014.|
|Sunday, October 18, 2015||21||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2014.|
|Friday, October 16, 2015||22||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2014.|
|Sunday, November 1, 2015||23||$74||Crowds will be heavy for character meets and parades.|
|Friday, October 9, 2015||24||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2013 and 2 days in advance in 2014.|
|Friday, October 23, 2015||Highest Wait Times||$74||Sold out 1 day in advance in 2014.|
To determine all of the above, we looked at posted wait times from key attractions including Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, it’s a small world, and The Barnstormer. We narrowed it down to times between 7pm and midnight, which is when the park is limited to party guests. Some quick notes about our research:
- Our wait times only include attractions−not character meet and greets, special shows, or parades. The characters, in particular, often have long lines, especially for rare characters like the Seven Dwarfs. Regardless of which party you attend, some of the character lines will be long. If those are a must do, do them as early in the evening as possible.
- In general the wait times during the Halloween parties are quite low, averaging only about 10 minutes. If there are any attractions that you have really been wanting to do, experiencing them during the Halloween party might just be the time.
Looking for more information? Erin Foster wrote an amazing overview of Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party that will help you whether this is your first trip or your 100th (and if it’s your 100th, you might have a problem…being too awesome). You may also want to check out Derek Burgan’s Six Reasons why He Loves the Halloween Party for even more Halloweenieness (that made up word is even a stretch for me).
If you consider yourself handy with the camera, or if you simply want better pictures, you can’t go wrong with Tom Bricker’s tips on photographing the Halloween party.
Now that you are armed with the most powerful weapon…knowledge, you can plan your 2015 trip to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party. This blog post will help you find all of the party dates and prices.
Hopefully this analysis will help you choose the best Halloween Party to attend. Make sure to check back here later, where we’ll soon be breaking down Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, as well.